Why are people backing away from agile? Theory one – losing sight of craftsmanship

Agile approaches are great and I even tell my friends to use them. But recently I have noticed some organisations backing away from their agile implementations.

It got scarier when I noticed that Ron Jeffries, one of the original signatories to the Agile Manifesto, wrote an article titled “Developers should abandon agile.”

It’s a good read and he makes some good points.  You can find the article here at this link.

Debate is always good, but it is scary that one of the founders of a movement is talking about giving up on it.

So what is going on, are people giving up on agile?  From where I sit there are a lot of people taking up agile approaches.

Are the founders of agile getting nervous because a new generation is taking things further than the old guard were comfortable with?  I don’t think that is the case.

Or is “going agile,” and even “being agile” failing to deliver value for the people who do implement it?

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Is it really that hard to learn agile?

I work with people going agile.  Sometimes it is an awesome experience and sometimes it is quite depressing.

For example, I worked with some good, experienced people a while back.  They were were pretty sad before I turned up and pretty happy that I came to help them. This is the part of the agile coaching experience that is awesome.

Before the dawn of agile:

  • Business cases took longer to get approval than some projects took to deliver; and
  • Worse than that, some projects took longer to die than the fading spirit of the team members on the project.

Then I arrived, crashing through the window with index cards in one hand and a mandate to free the people from tyranny in the other.

This is where I like to play.

Editor’s note – Unfortunately this article turns out to be a long read, so grab a cup of tea, or just look for some nice pictures and skip all the boring text.

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